[Photo Courtesy of the General Conferences of Seventh-day Adventists]

General Conference

Promises of God

President of the Seventh-day Adventist World Church, Ted N.C. Wilson asks what happens if we look at the 10 Commandments as promises?

Silver Spring, Maryland, United States | Ted N.C. Wison, President, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists

Hello, Friends! I hope you've had a good week and are looking forward to or are already experiencing the rest of God's blessed Sabbath day.
You know, the Sabbath is like a temple in time—sanctified, blessed, made holy by God Himself. And it is so rich and deep in its meaning, pointing to God as the Creator of heaven and earth, and "the sea and springs of water," as we read in Revelation 14:7.

And as we "rest from our labors as God rested from His," we are reminded that it is much more than a physical rest--it symbolizes a deep, spiritual rest, as explained in 

Hebrews 4:8, 9— "There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His."

Isn't it interesting that in the very heart of the Ten Commandments, specifically in the fourth, we find rest? Rest from our labors. Rest from worry and care. Rest from trying to save ourselves.

And, in fact, perhaps that is a good way to look at God's instructions--as given in the Ten Commandments--as a whole? Rather than seeing them as some strict list of--"You better not do this," "you better not do that"--instead we saw them as promises of what we can become through Christ, our living Savior?

In the beautiful book of 1 John, we read many magnificent descriptions of the love of God and His power to help us to be all that He plans for us. And in 1 John 5:2-5 we read the following amazing promise:

 "By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world--our faith" (1 John 5:2-5).

Did you catch that? Victory comes through faith! Faith in the blood and saving power of our Lord, Jesus Christ!

Did you ever stop to consider—What if God's law was a law of love, and not of obligation? What if it's not a series of dos and don'ts, but Ten Promises for a better life?

These questions were asked by a young Seventh-day Adventist by the name of Grant Steinweg, who wrote the following on his Facebook page:

"God never asks us to obey without giving us access to the power to do so. And this power doesn't reside inherently in human nature but comes from outside our proud hearts. The power is in the word of God itself. It is the same word that said, 'Let there be light' and there was light, and said, 'Let Us make mankind in Our image,' and the human race was born.

In the same way that God creates, He also redeems. Thus, the very law that to some may seem a burden or obligation contains within it the very power to heal and to restore."

Isn't that beautiful? As Grant, who is a very talented musician, continued to contemplate these thoughts, he composed and recorded a beautiful song. Let's listen now as Grant shares his song with us--"The Ten Promises."

Friends, I hope you were blessed by that magnificent song by Grant Steinweg, as I was. Thank you, Grant, for using your talents to glorify God and to bless many people by bringing into focus God's "Ten Promises."

Let us pray together just now. Dear Lord, thank you for giving the 10 Commandments. They didn’t just appear through your providential hand on Mount Sinai, they have existed throughout eternity. For the 10 Commandments are the foundation of your law of love. They are part of your character. Thank you Lord, for giving us these 10 Promises. These beautiful ways in which we can connect with you for an abundant life, not only here, but throughout eternity. And Lord, bless people like Grant, who have taken time to reflect and to put into words, in it to music, the wonderful relationship we can have with you. Thank you, Lord, for these wonderful 10 Promises, these 10 Commandments which point us to you and to a fuller life. Thank you that you are preparing us through your righteousness, you’re justifying and sanctifying righteousness, for the soon coming of Christ, when we can spend eternity with the offer of those 10 beautiful promises. We ask all of this, in the powerful name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Amen.